CCTV are the initials which form the logo of China's Central Television, a network of 22 channels broadcasting 24 hours a day. It is also the acronym for Closed Circuit Television, a code name which used to be posted next to (no) vacancy signs outside motels on American roads in the 80s and 90s promoting the availability of porn films in the rooms. Today, it is associated with the increasingly large number of surveillance cameras installed on the streets of western capitals and more importantly, the ten million cameras monitoring China's 1.3 billion people.
Stepping down from your flight at Beijing's Capital Airport, your facial features are first captured, measured and recorded as an immigration officer scans your passport. A centralized network of over 10 million cameras using Facial recognition system will then track your every move until you check out at the end of your journey. CCTV cameras are on the streets, in elevators, lobbies, movie theaters, karaoke bars and on hundreds of battery operated drone helicopters silently hovering above China's megalopolis.
After a successful mission in Las Vegas and Silicon Valley, infiltrating the contingent of Chinese executives. Jouni's courting abilities are once again put to use by US intelligence to penetrate the workforce of a Chinese classified surveillance program named TNI (Target Node Identifier) to be implemented in the BIOS software of all computers manufactured in China.
- 1 BEIJING CAPITAL AIRPORT
- 2 CCTV MAIN SERVER, MINISTRY OF PUBLIC SECURITY, UNDISCLOSED LOCATION, CHINA
- 3 THE OPPOSITE HOUSE HOTEL, BEIJING
- 4 3RD RING, BEIJING
- 5 WESTBOUND ON LINE 1, BEIJING SUBWAY
- 6 HANOVO CORPORATE CAMPUS, HAIDIAN DISTRICT, BEIJING
- 7 SUMMER PALACE PARK, HAIDIAN DISTRICT, BEIJING
- 8 BENCH, SUMMER PALACE PARK
- 9 OUTSIDE THE HOLIDAY INN HAIDIAN, BEIGING
- 10 DEAD DROP, UNDER THE 3RD RING, BEIJING
- 11 JOUNI'S ROOM, THE OPPOSITE HOUSE HOTEL
BEIJING CAPITAL AIRPORT
Jouni's uptight expression matches the passport photo displayed next to the live capture of her face on a bulky screen as she stands at the immigration counter.
CCTV MAIN SERVER, MINISTRY OF PUBLIC SECURITY, UNDISCLOSED LOCATION, CHINA
An algorithm is created with Jouni's facial feature and a log of her movements from the airport to her hotel room floor is unfolding.
THE OPPOSITE HOUSE HOTEL, BEIJING
Jouni pours cleansing lotion into her palm and gently applies it on her face to remove a layer of seamless asymmetrical make up.
After a long shower, she wears a hooded sports suit and sneakers before exiting her room. A series of CCTV cameras alternate between her floor, to the elevator to the lobby, in showing her stretching without ever revealing her hooded face until she exits the hotel for a run.
3RD RING, BEIJING
Jouni jogs under the elevated 3rd Ring expressway leading to the the Central Business District. After passing in front of the landmark Chinese Television Building, she find the designated dead spot, clear of CCTV coverage. She reaches the top of a steel beam where she find a MicroSD drive in a zip-lock. She inserts it in her phone which reboots, then dumps her hoodie over the steel beam and melts into the pedestrian traffic walking into the Beijing subway.
WESTBOUND ON LINE 1, BEIJING SUBWAY
Sitting amongst hundreds of commuters, she pulls her phone to see the status of the ongoing reboot then plugs her headphones to a mini mp3 player. Miles Davis starts playing. Jouni dozes off from jet lag as shes watches the passing stations: Dongdang, Wangfujing, Tiananmen, Tiananmen again, Xidan... As she fades away, her thoughts meander around her findings during her trip to the Baltic Sea. This old sailor who mentioned a baby on a submarine. Could this really be her mother's story? What was she listening to on these noisy radio broadcasts from around the world? Why has she been kept in the dark her whole life by her father? Why was her mother abandoned by her own mother and why did she died leaving a daughter, stuck with the same burden to find her roots... A subway employee shakes her shoulder. Pingguoyuan Station. End of the line. Jouni missed her stop.
HANOVO CORPORATE CAMPUS, HAIDIAN DISTRICT, BEIJING
Still in her running gear and with her headphones now plugged to her phone, Jouni pretends to be in a remote conversation by main entrance the Hanovo Headquarters. As she paces around the sidewalk, casually talking to herself, she discreetly points her phone in the direction of employees exiting the building while running the freshly installed facial recognition software to ID her target. After over an hour repeating the same routine to her imaginary speaker, a nerdy looking guy in his late twenties holding a backpack exits the building, not mingling with others. This is her man. Jouni hangs up her call, then start walking, tailing her target.
SUMMER PALACE PARK, HAIDIAN DISTRICT, BEIJING
The Chinese man crosses the pedestrian bridge over Kunming Lake as Jouni, now slowly jogging, passes him then stops a few meters ahead. Looking exhausted from her run, she turns around and gives a fatal look to her oncoming target.
-Excuse me... I started running and I think I got lost...
The young man stares at the archetypal Western bomb in awe.
-Do you speak English? continues Jouni.
He stares at her with a grin, then answers with the only English word that comes out... -No...
Jouni tries to hide her astonishment. That's the only thing that wasn't planned. How come the key software engineer of one of the largest computer maker in the world can't speak a word of English? Apart from No!
-Oh... is the only word she can utter as she tries find a way out, or more precisely, a way in.
Seeing young couples crossing the bridge hand in hand, she gives another killer smile to the young man then grabs his hand. No more words are exchanged, but the newly formed couple merges into the other lovers strolling on this early Spring afternoon.
BENCH, SUMMER PALACE PARK
As the odd couple sit at a park bench staring at the lake, the man gets an idea and launches a voice translation app on his phone.
The phone translates.
-My name is Li-xing. What is your name?
He then passes points the phone mic towards Jouni's mouth. She hesitates a few moments, then answers.
-My name is Sophie.
After a few seconds, she is surprised not to hear her assigned name in the uttered translation: Wǒ de míngzì shì liáng liúróufēn.
Li-xing smiles as he pronounces he name. -Liúróufēn
-Ohhh, Sū fēi!
Jouni smiles. The conversation continues through the device. Some aspects, lost in translation.
OUTSIDE THE HOLIDAY INN HAIDIAN, BEIGING
Still exchanging through the device, Xing and Jouni arrive in front of a Holiday Inn hotel.
-Well, thank you very much Lee Ching for rescuing me... I was completely lost.
-It was my pleasure.
-Ok, so it's a date. Tomorrow evening for Beijing duck!
-Yes, I'll pick you up at 19:00
Jouni extends her hand at Xing who now looks at ease and comfortable with her.
-Ok. Well see you tomorrow then. Jouni turns around the enters the Hotel as Xing stands on the sidewalk to see her away.
Moments later, She walks out peeking around then grabs a cab standing by and pulls a photo of the CCTV headquarter on her phone to show to the driver.
DEAD DROP, UNDER THE 3RD RING, BEIJING
Jouni pulls back her hoodie hidden on top of a steel beam, wears it, pops the hood over, then resumes her jogging session under the elevated highway.
JOUNI'S ROOM, THE OPPOSITE HOUSE HOTEL
Jouni, lying on her bed, starts reading data about her mission and target on one of her freshly installed apps:
DENG LI XING - BORN GUANGZHOU - 19860115
SIBBLINGS - NO
MOTHER - FACTORY MANAGER
FATHER - CIVIL ENGINEER
EDUCATION - GUANGZHOU UNIVERSITY COMPUTER SCIENCE 2007
EDUCATION - PHD BEIJING UNIVERSITY OF POSTS & TELECOMMUNICATIONS 2010
EMPLOYER - HANOVO SINCE 2010
FOOD - N/A
ONLINE ENTERTAINMENT - MINECRAFT
ONLINE PORNOGRAPHY: TRANSSEXUALS
Shutting down her phone, Jouni breath out.